Force of Nature by Jane Harper
Five women reluctantly pick up their backpacks and start walking along the muddy track. Only four come out the other side.
The hike through the rugged Giralang Ranges is meant to take the office colleagues out of their air-conditioned comfort zone and teach resilience and team building. At least that is what the corporate retreat website advertises.
Federal Police Agent Aaron Falk has a particularly keen interest in the whereabouts of the missing bushwalker. Alice Russell is the whistleblower in his latest case – and Alice knew secrets. About the company she worked for and the people she worked with.
Far from the hike encouraging teamwork, the women tell Falk a tale of suspicion, violence and disintegrating trust. And as he delves into the disappearance, it seems some dangers may run far deeper than anyone knew.
A Library Book Club choice and a good one too. Federal Police, Aaron Falk and his offsider Carmen, are investigating a company fraud when their informant, Alice, who works for the company goes missing with four other employees on a team building exercise. The setting is dense forest in the Giralang Ranges in Victoria. The women lose their way and after a harrowing time only four of them emerge. What has happened?
This is a real page-turner. Jane Harper has complete control of the narrative throughout and she maintains the suspense while creating a cast of well-drawn and interesting characters.